Cisco crypto mining report reveals students use university computers

March 9, 2019, | AtoZ Markets – Crypto mining plays an important role in the cryptocurrency market. The recent Cisco crypto mining report revealed that the high education facilities account for 22% of all crypto-mining operations in the United States. Are universities taking actions against such crypto mining operations?

University Students are the second largest crypto miners group

The research was carried out with Cisco’s security product Umbrella, which monitors clients’ network connections to screen malicious activity, including crypto mining. According to the recent tech conglomerate report, college campuses are the second largest cryptocurrency miners across industry verticals. The report showed that the high education facilities account for 22% of all crypto-mining operations in the United States. The discovery of a technical conglomerate did not come as a big surprise. Students involved in Cryptocurrency mining are fully aware of how to get tokens in a crypto space.

Crypto mining in University campuses and dorm rooms

Cisco crypto mining report was not the first to show that campuses are a breeding ground for cryptography. One of the cyber attack monitoring firms, observed a similar trend last year. The report outlined that in April 2018, “deliberate mining of cryptocurrency and cryptocurrency are becoming more common on campuses than in any other industry.” Considering that it is quite easy to learn how to mine Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency. 

Last year, Joey Dilliha, an 18-year-old student at Western Kentucky University, told media that he leaves a Bitmain Antminer running in his dorm room, consistently garnering $30 each week in profit. “I believe more people should be doing it. It’s super fun, and cool cheap way to be introduced to the market of mining,” he stated. Dilliha added that his college does not permit the mining activities due to such being perceived as a fire hazard. “On dorm room check days, I have to turn it off and put a blanket over it. However, my RA loves to come in and talk about it with me,” he added.

Crypto mining labeled as illegal in certain colleges

Officials from Stanford University in California knew about such activities back in January 2018. The chief information security officer of the school posted warnings about the crypto-mining activity on campus and that the university’s equipment and resources “should not be used for personal financial gain.”

Crypto Mining helps students to pay tuition fee

According to data of the Colleage Tuition Compare, the college tuition fees in the USA have always been high. For many students who are unlucky enough to get a scholarship, paying for their higher education becomes a difficult task. In addition to student loans, resourceful young people are finding new ways to stay afloat and get their degree. Brilliant students, especially those who are preparing for a career in the field of information technology getting into crypto mining business to make extra money. The method which considered completely legal, but which often may border on the questionable territory.

Cisco crypto mining report: Reasons for growing crypto mining in campuses

Austin McBride, a Cisco threat researcher, noted, that one of the main reasons for growing mining activity in the university campuses is that students don’t have to pay for the electricity while being in college.  

Such miners can indulge in the mining of virtual currencies without any significant cost overheads. Cisco threat researcher noted that cryptocurrency mining rigs can easily be set up in dorm rooms or the library, allowing students to mine cryptocurrencies at a lower expense than the general average.

In one of his latest interviews McBride explained why the mining in universities has reached that high level:

“Mining difficulty for a lot of coins is very high right now — which means it costs more for electricity and internet than the profit you can produce from mining those coins. If you don’t have to pay for those costs, then you are in a really good spot for making money on the university’s dime. You leave [the mining rig] running in your dorm room for four years, you walk out of college with a big chunk of change

He added that one of the reasons that mining became so popular among students, is because such activity was not restricted to students alone. McBride concluded, that many hackers on a regular basis broke into vulnerable networks with malware to mine cryptocurrencies on the university’s network. This is also the reason why earlier this year, Firefox planned to block crypto mining malware scripts.

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